art by Cheryl Owen-Wilson
by Sean R Robinson
She thought that The Machine would be easy compared to unstitching a tesseract. She didn't know when the creation had earned itself a name, complete with capital letters, but as she peered into another of the supplementary power coils, she thought it was around the same time she created her lab coat.
Every scientiste she'd read about, whether they studied the algedonics of whales south of the tropic of cancer, or were engineers developing bronze bas-reliefs to commemorate the fifteenth moon landing, deserved a coat to mark proficiency in their study.
She earned hers the day she melted down her mother's tiara for slug iron bolts instead of washing her face with morning dew. She had looked at the chitin wings that grew from her shoulders, and the delicate tracing of blue veins that gave them life. Then she cut them down with scissors and stitched them with catgut until it fell to her wrists and her knees and she was an appropriately attired scientiste.